When I first got an e-mail about the conference, I started out by thinking it would be weird to go because I was only a seller for less than a year… to feeling energized and motivated after the conference… a complete 180. #TPT2014 #TPT14
Some people might think I am crazy due to my willingness to hang out with strangers for the day, but it makes me feel right at home…
Since I was in middle school, I have been very willing to socialize with others, especially if I don’t know them very well. In fact, I would say that I was most comfortable with friends first, then people I didn’t know at all, and finally was the least comfortable with acquaintances. I thought I was so wise in middle school… oh boy! I will never trade my best friends for anything, but do agree that sometimes the “acquaintance stage” has a history of being incredibly awkward. Then again, I tend to over think everything! (Thanks Mom…) Sure, I do get uncomfortable easily, but I can still talk to anyone if I have to or want to. I can thank my dad for the social gene.
Even though I am super new (less than a year) to Teachers Pay Teachers, it was great to see the teacher that got me started on TPT, Lindsay Perro. I didn’t even know how to pronounce her last name until she stated her name at the TPT Conference Session. Nevertheless, a colleague showed me a sample of her coloring pages, which enticed me to try this TPT thing for myself. I noticed the teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Lindsay-Perro along the bottom of the page, so I investigated when I got home. I realized that she specialized in middle school mathematics, which really excited me. After all, I had been teaching middle school math for 5 going on 6 years. Let me be clear: I created worksheets, quizzes, and tests for my department regularly, but I had never tried to sell and market my products. I completed my TPT investigation over the summer, signed up, and the rest is history!
During the cocktail hour, I inadvertently got a photo taken with Paul. I was taking a picture for someone else that I had just met. What seemed like a few minutes later, I was still standing there next to Paul and his arm was still around me… oops! Clearly he was thinking that I was waiting for someone to take a picture, so I got my phone out of my purse and had someone take a picture. However, I am not proud of how I look because I did not give myself enough time to get ready in the morning. My “excuse” is that I was too lazy to get up because I live in Vegas so didn’t have very far to go for the conference. In all reality my excuse would have been that I couldn’t handle being out-of-town if the conference were across the country. Sometimes I am hopeless when it comes to getting ready to go somewhere… Especially now that I spend most of my time at home now that I teach online.
Even though I still feel new, I have started to feel much more comfortable after attending the conference. Before I felt like I was on my island; A familiar feeling for me, as I was the only person teaching my topic for several years. Distancing me further, I never bought any other teacher’s products, and didn’t have anyone to collaborate with. Luckily, I found a perfect counterpart to bounce ideas off of last year! Yay 🙂
Now back to the conference… Ok I’ll be honest, I did still feel a bit like an outsider at the conference at times. It seems like everyone has business cards, use graphics on their products (typically purchased from other TPT sellers), blogs regularly, have a Facebook page, pins a few times a week, etc… whew… When I spoke with sellers that have been going at it a little longer than me they told me that I need to get on the TPT Seller’s Forums and on Facebook. Recently, I have read a few of the posts on the sellers forum, but there is so much… I will go back again soon and try to find something to comment on. I am looking forward to meeting some new friends in other sellers.